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Comment: Re:Rainwater collection from homes (or roads) (Score 1) 594

by hawguy (#49514679) Attached to: William Shatner Proposes $30 Billion Water Pipeline To California

1 inch of water per SQFT is for those who want that golf green lawn. Until about 6 years ago I never watered my lawn and it remained reasonably beautiful with just normal precipitation. Now I only water my lawn when it's dry for extended periods. I water for only 15 minutes per section (whatever amount of water that equals to I'm not sure but I managed to do the whole lawn which is about 30x30 total which is about 1/3 inch per sqft).

Watering a 30x30 ft lawn with 1/3 inch of water is around 180 gallons, so if you're spreading 50 gallons over that lawn, you're only getting around 1/10th of an inch of water, barely enough to penetrate the soil.

So the point is, I get whatever I get out of the 50 gallons. It's water that isn't coming out of the city's water supply. Those that are more serious (such as some I know) will get a 1000 gallon tank installed at time of construction. Each 50 gallon saves me $10 (based on the lowest rate in the consumption chart) and based on my bills I figure I save between $25 and $40 a month.

Where do you live that you pay $0.20/gallon for water? In San Francisco, the water+sewer rate is closer to $0.02/gallon. The city with the highest cost for water + sewer in this chart is Atlanta, GA ataround $0.026 per gallon.

If you're refilling your 50 gallon barrel 2.5 to 4 times a month with rainwater, you probably don't need much water for irrigation anyway, sounds like you're already getting regular rain.

Comment: Re:Rainwater collection from homes (or roads) (Score 1) 594

by hawguy (#49513847) Attached to: William Shatner Proposes $30 Billion Water Pipeline To California

I didn't read all comments but suggesting to use the water that dropped on our roofs for drinking is silly to say the least. What I've seen new home owners do is have plastic reservoirs placed underground in their backyard. All gutters are redirected to this container which has an overflow to allow the excess to go back to the street. This allows the user to water his garden and lawn at no cost and it reduces the load on the network.

I personally only have a 50 gallon barrel that is hidden from view and it collects rain water. An electric pump (with filter) is used to water my lawn and garden. I also use it to wash the cars and bring up the water level of the pool. The cost of the setup paid for itself within less that 5 years. In my case I have about 1200 sqft of roof. The only disadvantage of the setup is that I have to stay on top of it before winter (drain and seal the barrel)

I don't see how you get so much use out of a single 50 gallon barrel -- a lawn needs around an inch of water per week, so a small 10 foot by 10 foot lawn is going to need around 62 gallons of water per week. Yet you manage to water your lawn, wash your cars, and bring up the water level of the pool with a single 50 gallon barrel.

Comment: Re:Rainwater collection from homes (or roads) (Score 1) 594

by hawguy (#49513635) Attached to: William Shatner Proposes $30 Billion Water Pipeline To California

To properly handle something like rainwater takes upfront design. Some kind of roof tank that can gravity-feed all house toilets, and outdoor hoses would be nice.

As to thinking the consumer should pay for water recycling costs, I'm not suggesting that.

You just suggested building rainwater collection and 6,000 gallon holding tanks into new construction, if consumers don't pay for it, who will? Putting the 24 ton tank on top of buildings sounds like it's going to drive up building costs substantially (especially in an earthquake zone). Seems like it would be better to bury the tank and pump water to where it's needed.

But water use reduction and recycling does have to be forced, one way or another -- whether that is a cost per gallon causing prudent use, or even/odd watering days, or "no lawns allowed in AZ". So you offer incentives to those who capture...much like the solar energy people are doing today. The point is we all pay, whether the cost is direct or indirect.

But what's the cost/benefit between small scale rainwater collection and large scale municipal water collection? For most people, water only costs a penny or two per gallon (including sewage costs), is it really worth $60 - $100/year to build a 6000 gallon water collection system into your home? Greywater recycling might be more affordable since it doesn't need a huge tank.

As to crops, why don't they put down thick black plastic over the entire field. Then capture that water to a swimming pool sized holding tank, and pump it back out via drip/sprinkler systems to water their plants as needed.

I don't know if such a system is workable -- each acre would collect 27,000 gallons of water from one inch of rain, that's a lot of water to store. So collecting 10 inches of winter rain to use for summer irrigation is going to take a 270,000 gallon tank for each acre (which is a 100x100x4' tank)

Plus, preventing rainwater from seeping into the ground is just going to increase the amount of water that needs to be added through irrigation.

In any case, the answer for why it's not done is "It's expensive -- more expensive than the subsidized water" it would replace.

Comment: Re:Rainwater collection from homes (or roads) (Score 1) 594

by hawguy (#49511879) Attached to: William Shatner Proposes $30 Billion Water Pipeline To California

Average SF home is over 2,000 sq. ft. Assume a roof size, conservatively, of 1,000 sq. ft.

Most new housing in SF is not single family -- when I lived in SF, my share of roof for my 1000 sq ft apartment was around 100 sq feet.

10 inches of rain on 1,000 sq. ft. is around 6,000 gallons available per household per year.

Even if I could capture 6000 gallons of water, where would I find a place to store a 10 x 10 x 8 foot container that weighs 24 tons?

You could provide for 12% of residential water needs just by people not sending their roof water to the sewer system.

Why shift billions of dollars of costs to consumers to build home water capture and treatment systems when cutting just 3% of agricultural usage would free up the same amount of water? You know what's easier than capturing residential roof runoff? Not planting water-heavy crops in the desert and shipping them overseas.

Imagine if we reused the water that lands on roadways...172,000 miles of highway, average width of ~10 feet...68 billion gallons of water wasted each year...almost what the entire state uses in a year.

I don't think you understand just how much water california uses -- residential use along is 6 - 8 million acre feet, 68B gallons is only around 200,000 acre feet. It would cost billions to build 172,000 miles of highway water reclamation and treatment plants.

Comment: Re:Sony pirating e-books? (Score 1) 59

by hawguy (#49503541) Attached to: Hacked Sony Emails Reveal That Sony Had Pirated Books About Hacking

One of my highschool teachers when inquired as to why he was allowed to drink coffee while we were not, responded with this:
"Quod licet Iovi non licet bovi."

I've always detested this way of thinking, as it is just a stupid rationalization for the real reason: "Whatever, fuck you, I can get away with it."

That's not a rationalization for "Whatever, fuck you, I can get away with it," thats exactly what it means.

But really, what other answer did you expect? Sounds like you were disappointed that he didn't make some attempt at rationalization and instead he told you the truth.

Comment: Re: Of Course It Is (Score 2) 78

by hawguy (#49479881) Attached to: GAO Warns FAA of Hacking Threat To Airliners

There are reasons they get connected. Many times the in-flight entertainment systems need to know things like the position, speed, altitude and heading to perform their assigned tasks. You want the entertainment system to be turned off below 10,000 feet AGL, or if you want the system to supply your customers a graphic that gives the position, speed, heading and accurate ETA then you need to get that information from the flight management system. I can imagine that it might be important to change how the data systems connect to the internet based on where the aircraft is (choosing the cheaper data path when it is in range) or use that data connection to report maintenance information to the airline's mechanics.

There are plenty of reasons the flight controls might not be totally air gapped from the in-flight entertainment systems.

RS-232 with the the RX wire clipped on the avionics side would be a good way to pass that information in a one-way direction. Or just use a dedicated GPS receiver for the entertainment system.

Comment: Re:Of Course It Is (Score 4, Interesting) 78

by hawguy (#49479779) Attached to: GAO Warns FAA of Hacking Threat To Airliners

However, if the systems are properly designed and firewalled and the software properly vetted, I believe that you can eliminate the chances of having a successful attack vector. The problem though is how to write regulations that can assure something doesn't get overlooked and how you could prove that to the GAO so they will get off the FAA's back...

Lots of companies have gotten hacked through their properly designed and firewalled network -- every software product (even firewalls) has security holes. The only sure way to isolate the avionics from the passenger network is to air gap it. Don't rely on a firewall - I really can't believe that an airgapped network is not standard practice.

Comment: Why make it overly complicated? (Score 2) 443

To back up a few GB, why are you making it complicated?

First, if your home fire safe is not media rated, then don't count on any media surviving a fire, the firesafe may prevent paper from burning, but don't count on it keeping any electronic media from melting or degrading. And a fire safe is no guarantee, my sister lost her house and *everything* in it -- the only thing recognizable was part of a 100 year old cast iron stove, and the remains of the brick fireplace, everything else ended up in an unrecognizable pile of debris in what was left of the basement, there wasn't even enough left of their thousand dollar gun safe to be found in the debris.

A few GB is *nothing* -- just encrypt it and email it to yourself, set up multiple accounts with different email providers if you don't trust that Google will be around for the long haul.

If you had tens or hundreds of GB of data, then I'd say use a cloud provider and migrate your data to a new provider if that one goes out of business. I keep my data in Amazon Glacier -- for $10/month (it's mostly old family home videos converted to digital along with a lot of TIFF photos). If I needed to recover the data all at once, I could send them a hard drive (plus a fee) and they'd restore to that hard drive and mail it back to me.

Comment: Re:Siphon water to the Salton Sea (Score 2) 173

Drop a pipe in the Pacific, run it over the mountains, maybe parallel to the road that descends into Palm Springs and refill that nasty smelling swamp. On the way down the hill you can generate electricity, desalinate, extract minerals and make sushi. Win, win, win and wasabi.

Death Valley is next. I'm pretty sure turtles float.

I don't think you understand the limits of a siphon -- the maximum rise along a siphon for water is 32 feet (the same limit as the limit for a suction pump, which is why well pumps are at the bottom of the well) -- any higher and the pressure within the liquid drops below its vapor pressure and bubbles form, breaking the siphon. It'd take large pumps and a lot of energy to pump the water over any significant rise - even if you extract some of the energy on the way down, you don't get nearly as much back as you put in.

Since the Salton sea is below sea level, you could tunnel the water in -- though it would take massive pipes/aqueducts for enough water to flow for significant energy generation.

Comment: I had the same problem (Score 5, Informative) 179

by hawguy (#49450963) Attached to: Google Lollipop Bricking Nexus 5 and Nexus 7 Devices

My Nexus 5 went into a reboot loop, after a lot of research online (and taking the phone apart to see if the power switch was damaged (it appeared to be working fine with a good "click" when pressed) -- I managed to get to boot by repeatedly and rapidly hitting the power button while it was booting, then quickly unlocked the phone and rebooted into safe mode by holding down the power button.

After it booted into safe mode, I left it in the charger overnight, and in the morning, rebooted back into normal mode and it was fine. Mostly. It was no longer in the reboot loop, but kept powering itself off throughout the day.

I replaced it with a new phone, moved my SIM over, and then the Nexus appeared to be fine, no more poweroffs, no reboot loops, I used it as a Wifi-only tablet for a day and then it got a Lolipop 5.1 OTA upgrade, so I upgraded. It's been over a week since then, and it's still working fine as a wifi-only tablet, I haven't tried moving the SIM back

I still have no idea what was wrong with the phone, maybe it was a hardware problem with the switch, or maybe it was a software problem. My Nexus 7 tablet (also running lollipop) is fine.

I replaced my Nexus 5 with a Samsung Galaxy S5 -- I really like the S5 (and removable SIM), but I hate Samsung's Touchwiz interface. I really wanted to stick with the Nexus line, but am not willing to pay $700 for a 64GB Nexus 6 when the S5 cost about half that and I wasn't going to buy another Nexus 5 after what happened to this one.

Comment: Any company that falls for it deserves it (Score 1) 108

by hawguy (#49449591) Attached to: ICANN Asks FTC To Rule On<nobr> <wbr></nobr>.sucks gTLD Rollout

Any company that falls for the "Buy before anyone else does!" deserves whatever price they pay -- they can't buy up every .sucks domain for every permutation of their company name, so why bother? Is "" significantly worse than "" or "" or "" or "" or any of the other thousands of permutations of the name?

Comment: Re:And it's not even an election year (Score 2) 407

But H1Bs basically aren't allowed to stay and get treated like shit while they are here.

Can't move jobs; because if they are ever unemployed even for a moment they are breaching visa requirements and immediately deported; or jailed, and then deported.

So we kick them back out again, and start the cycle again. (Saying goodbye to their spending power and wages we just paid them, since they take it back to India [or wherever])

Even if the employer files for H1-B revocation, it can take months to process that paperwork, so generally if an H1-B holder loses their job they have a bit of time to search for employment - they'll usually be able to transfer their visa to a new employer if they find a new job within 30 days. My company just hired an H1-B applicant that was in this situation -- his employer shut down suddenly, he was jobless for about 2 weeks before we hired him and filed for the transfer.

No INS agent is going to bang on your door and take you away the day you lose your job.

While some H1-B's may scrimp and save up money to send home (or take back home with them at the end of their employment), most H1-B's I know spend most of their money just like everyone else - on housing, food, transportation, entertainment, etc. Likewise, if they are only in the country for a few years, they will have paid social security and medicare taxes that they will not get any benefit from (though they may get relief from some or all of their social security tax obligation if they are from a country with a totalization agreement with the USA -- mostly European and (some) Asian countries, notable exceptions are India and China)

The intelligence of any discussion diminishes with the square of the number of participants. -- Adam Walinsky